Phoenix Battalion prepares for reintegration

by Sgt. Danielle Sweet-Reyes and 2nd Lt. Greg Godfrey
3rd STB, 3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div.

Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

February marks the beginning of the end of a long deployment for the 3rd Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Advise and Assist Brigade, 4th Infantry Division Soldiers in Iraq. The Soldiers of this brigade are no doubt looking forward to trading places with the new unit and completing a successful transfer of authority. With the end of the deployment drawing near, there is much to consider and plan for. For many, the end of the deployment means reuniting with family, being able to relax, and getting reacquainted with the forgotten concept of time off. There is housing to be found, unpacking to contend with, and plenty of shopping to be done. The excitement can be felt more profoundly with each day crossed off the calendar. So what is everyone going to be doing when we finally touch ground on more familiar soil? Pfc. Konnie Noorda, a signal support specialist with Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, is excited to see her
See “Home” Page 4 Spc. Justin Bartee, from Pleasant Hope, Mo., holds a photo of his three-year-old son, Jonathan, who is kissing his month-old sister, Teannah. Upon redeployment, Bartee will meet his newborn daughter for the first time. Bartee is deployed with HHT, 3rd STB, 3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div.
Photo by Spc. Khori D. Johnson

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AudIe Murphy honors
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Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

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Audie Murphy Club Induction
When Soldiers hear the name Audie Murphy, most think in terms of the values: honor, duty, courage, leadership and selfless service. To be compared with Murphy is an honor many noncommissioned officers of the Army aspire to, but few achieve. Six NCOs within 3rd Advise and Assist Brigade, 4th Infantry Division received the honor Feb. 14. The NCOs received the Sergeant Audie Murphy Award and were subsequently inducted into the 3rd AAB’s Sergeant Audie Murphy Club at Memorial Hall on Camp Adder: -- Sgt. 1st Class Roberto C. Ayala, of Santurce, Puerto Rico, assigned to Company C, 1st Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment. -- Sgt. 1st Class Manuel Chazaliaza, of Lima, Peru, assigned to Battery B, 3rd Battalion, 29th Field Artillery Regiment. -- Staff Sgt. Jerome K. Anderson, of St. Ann, Jamaica, assigned to Company E, 1st Battalion, 68th Armor Regiment. -- Staff Sgt. Christopther J. Farrington, of Hogansburg, N.Y., assigned to Company B, 64th Brigade Support Battalion. -- Staff Sgt. Walter J. Mack Jr., of St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, assigned to Company G, 3rd Bn., 29th FA Reg. -- Staff Sgt. Charles H. Martin Jr., of Little Rock, Ark., Company C, 1st Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment.

Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

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Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

Home: 3rd STB looks forward to first times, good times
Continued from Page 1

family who is making the trip to Colorado Springs, Colo., from Lyman, Wyo., to visit her for the four-day weekend. Capt. Ryan Purdy, of Mattoon, Ill., plans to celebrate his seventh wedding anniversary with his wife. “I joke with my wife that this is really our fourth wedding anniversary, because I’ve been deployed for the other three,” he said. Many, like Purdy, are planning long-awaited excursions to Europe during block leave. Others are looking forward to going back home and simply hanging out with family members. Spc. Justin Bartee, an infantryman with HHT, who is going home to Pleasant Hope, Mo., said, “My daughter is a month old, and I’m going to meet her for the first time.” 1st Lt. Todd Geszvain and Staff Sgt. Lee Bellows from Company B, are also new fathers who can’t wait to get home and reunite with family. “I am really excited to get home and spend time with my family. My daughter will be seven months old and crawling all over the place,”

said Geszvain of Burlington, Wis. Planning has already begun for successful reintegration. Leave dates are being chosen, family visits are being planned, and vacations are in the works. Some Soldiers have their eyes set on faroff, exotic lands, while others wish to look no further than that first cold beer and their own couch. “I can’t wait to go to a hockey game and watch a boxing match break out!” said Sgt. William Oelsner of McDonough, Ga., about his plans to see the Colorado Avalanche play. The Fort Carson Morale, Welfare and Recreation staff organizes a number of events and has plenty of information about all the great things going on around Fort Carson. In the midst of all of the excitement with redeployment, the safety of the Phoenix Soldiers is always a top priority. Traffic safety, alcohol awareness, family cohesion, financial management and stress management are a few issues that are kept in mind while Soldiers reintegrate stateside. After an initial four-day pass, the brigade will undergo a severalweek long reintegration period,

which incorporates a myriad of classes and briefings. This may all sound significantly less interesting than a cold beer or a trip to Europe, but it is important nonetheless. “The reintegration period is important because it’s all about having a system in place to take care of soldiers. After this deployment, we know each other so well that we’ll be able to spot potential problems with our battle buddies,” said Sgt. 1st Class Jeremy Venuti, of Flagstaff, Ariz., who is a platoon sergeant with Company A.

1st Lt. Todd Geszvain, from Burlington, Wis., holds his new daughter. He was able to be there for her birth while he was on leave from Iraq. Geszvain is assigned to Company B, 3rd STB.

Photo by Angela Geszvain

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Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

As our deployment comes to an end, I imagine we are all excited about going home and spending quality time with our loved ones who have been eagerly waiting for our return. What a wonderful time of reunion this will be! Our hearts are soaring with great anticipation. As I look around and see the Soldiers whose steps seem a bit lighter with brighter countenance, now that we see our counterpart Soldiers appearing in large numbers, I know I share everyone’s excitement. I look upon all the Soldiers and civilians who came with us as faithful heroes who responded to our nation’s call. As I see familiar faces every day, I am simply amazed at how dutifully and faithfully they have been carrying out their work in the midst of various challenges. We have lived through the scorching days in the desert and now through the cold nights of Iraqi winter. The Iron Brigade warriors have done a remarkable job throughout this deployment. Everyone who is redeploying should be recognized and commended for the great work done in service to our nation. Every deployment experience is unique, and we come away with renewed sense of commitment and

make sacrifices associated with our time away from our families. Although we do not enjoy the separation aspect of the deployment, we gain something intangible. We’ve learned to rely on our fellow Soldiers who were there for us when we needed them. We have learned to share our lives with our battle buddies and we know how much we care for one another. Friendships have been forged, and memories have been seared in our minds. We’ve learned to trust our leaders to care for us in the ways we would never have experienced. We are better men and women because of what we’ve gone through collectively. I know we will be more mature spouses to our loved ones back home, more mature parents to our children, and more mature children to our parents who love us unconditionally. As we reintegrate with our families back home, we want to remember to be soft, gentle, patient and understanding throughout this process. Everything takes time and patience. Overlooking others’ mistakes or faults goes a long way in building solid relationships. We want to be as gentle with our loved ones, as we try to adjust to

Brigade Chaplain 3rd BCT, 4th Inf. Div.

Maj. John Lim

our life back in the states. We’ve done well while we were out here, and now it is a great time for us to show that we’ve matured. Even as we interact with our loved ones, remember to be thoughtful, and considerate. We will be amazed how our families and friends will appreciate our effort. Let’s take away positive gains from this experience so that we may continue to serve with a sense of pride and commitment. We should be proud to wear the Stars and Stripes on our right shoulder, as we leave Iraq and return home. God bless all the proud brothers and sisters of Iron Brigade and the families represented from now and forever more!

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give hope and a future.” -Jeremiah 29:11
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3rd AAB strengthens Soldiers beyond physical training
3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div., Public Affairs

Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

by Pvt. Chastity R. Boykin

A few years ago, a deployed Soldier looking for help on an emotional level had few resources outside of a behavioral health provider. And too often, seeing a behavioral health professional came with an unwanted side effect: the negative stigma and perceived weakness associated with asking for help. Over the last two years, the Army’s continuing efforts to help Soldiers deal with the pressures of deployment have expanded to a variety of resources at home and overseas designed to help Soldiers balance issues with emotional health, family relationships, combat-related stress and self confidence—all the while reducing the stigma. In its own effort to help Soldiers

help themselves, the 3rd Advise and Assist Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, opened the Iron Stronghold Resiliency Center on Camp Adder November 2010, where Soldiers can seek support in the five pillars of Comprehensive Soldier Fitness: Physical, Emotional, Spiritual, Family, and Social. The new program is designed to bring the emotional, social, spiritual and Family aspects of fitness to the same level of importance and cultural acceptance as physical fitness. Aside from games, computers and movies, which allow them to relax from the various stressors of a deployment and connect with friends and family, Soldiers may seek help from the chaplain, a nutritionist or the equal opportunity representative.

Sgt. Blake Pittman goes to the center almost every evening after work, exercising the social aspect of Comprehensive Soldier Fitness. He has also begun volunteering during the evenings, when the center is busy, helping out at the front desk. “I’ve spent a lot of time in the movie room. A couple of my coworkers and I had a semiregular movie night for awhile. Depending on who’s with me, I might also play some Xbox or ping pong,” said Pittman, assigned to the 110th Combat Sustained Support Battalion out of Tifton, Ga. Pittman, who is originally from Douglasville, Ga., also encourages his friends to use the center. “Now that the Resiliency Center is open, it’s become a home away
See “Health” Page 7

Sgt. Blake Pittman, an intelligence analyst from the 110th Combat Sustained Support Battalion out of Tifton, Ga., relaxes by playing a video game after work. Pittman comes to the Resiliency Center almost every evening after work, exercising the social aspect of the Army’s Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program on Camp Adder.

Photo by Pvt. Chastity R. Boykin

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February 28, 2011

Health: The Iron Brigade uses Comphrehensive Soldier Fitness to take care of its veterans and build better Soldiers
Continued from Page 6

from home, another place to unwind,” he said. In addition to spiritual and nutritional guidance, Soldiers can take classes in yoga, communication techniques, anger management, and relaxation methods. The Iron Stronghold was built by 3rd AAB Soldiers for use by every Soldier on Camp Adder and its outlying bases. Soldiers run the center to keep it open 24/7. “The center helps Soldiers deal with their problems by showing them better ways to think about situations, what is really causing them to feel a certain way, how to be optimistic about situations, how to control their emotions, and lastly it helps them realize that it’s okay to ask for help,” said Staff Sgt. Sebastian Zarasua, of Crawford, Neb., and the center’s noncommissioned officer in

charge, assigned to 3rd Battalion, 29th Field Artillery Regiment, 3rd AAB. Pittman believes that the Comprehensive Soldier Fitness program, which is guiding units to create resources like the Iron Stronghold, is vital to the Army and to Soldiers. “I have some military background with my family, and hearing

Spc. Jeremiah Juhlin, of Cottonwood, Ariz., concentrates while he takes his next shot in a game of pool at the Iron Stronghold.

Photo by Spc. Khori Johnson

stories from them, I get a feeling that things are much better now,” he said. “Think about the clichéd image of the homeless vet begging for alms on the street corner. That it’s become a stereotype of sorts is a travesty. We need to take care of our veterans, and I believe [the resiliency center] helps because it builds better Soldiers.” The center has seen more than 6,000 people come through the doors in the last few month, and with reoccurring events and innovative ways to reach Soldiers, the Soldiers who run the center hope to attract a whole lot more. “Everyone’s friendly, and I feel more comfortable talking to them. Going to [the clinic] seems daunting because it’s a clinical setting, and that atmosphere just isn’t present here,” said Pittman. “Taking the stigma away from seeking help is a huge step in the right direction.”
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Bulldogs prepare to end fourth tour in support of Iraq
3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div., Public Affairs

Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

by Spc. Khori D. Johnson

Since the initial moments of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003, the world has been watching Iraq’s story unfold. While most are familiar with Iraq’s journey, Battery B, 3rd Battalion, 29th Field Artillery Regiment, has been trudging across its landscape from its liberation to rebirth. As the Bulldog Battery approaches the end of its fourth deployment to Iraq, it has become apparent to them how much hard work and dedication they have put into the advancement of this country. During OIF I, which was a high-intensity combat situation, the Battery B Bulldogs provided cannon fire to support Soldiers on the ground, according to 1st Sgt. Craig Collins, who has been with the unit since 2004. These operations included illumination missions that could bring sunlight during twilight, smoke missions that could provide concealment to an entire platoon, and fire missions that could eliminate or suppress any threat. After arriving in Iraq to support OIF 10-11 and Operation New

Dawn, Battery B conducted operations at Joint Security Station Jenkins as a quick reaction force, where they were required to be ready at a moment’s notice to respond to a variety of situations or threats. They also partnered with nearby Iraqi security forces to assist in maintaining security and stability.

The Bulldog Battery is one of the key elements in the battalion’s effort, said Battery Commander, Capt. Wyatt Brown. “We cover thousands of kilometers a week,” he said. According to Collins, the Bulldog’s have cleared more than 40,000 kilometers of roadways since assuming the mission.

Field artillery Soldiers establish a line of protection during a security operation near Nasiriyah, Iraq. Battery B, 3rd Bn., 29th FA Reg., 3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div., conducts route-clearing and maneuvering operations in southern Iraq.

Photo by 1st Sgt. Craig Collins

Following the closure of JSS Jenkins, the Bulldogs moved operations to Camp Adder, where they assumed the route clearance and maneuver missions, ensuring safe travel on the roadways for Iraqi citizens and military personnel.

They’ve also worked closely with the Iraqi Police and the Iraqi Highway Patrol to keep the roads safe. Along with route clearance, the battery conducts missions to
See “Progress” Page 9

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Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

Progress: Bulldog Soldiers gain motivation with solid statistics
Continued from Page 8

prevent indirect fire and improvised explosive devices against Iraqi and U.S. forces. “Our Soldiers have had a huge impact on this area,” said Collins. “Sometimes it’s transparent, and you don’t see how much good you are doing because nothing happens. But our actions have prevented a lot of things from happening. We’ve prevented these insurgent elements from having freedom of movement and getting to do whatever they want to do.” Although patrolling roads can be a monotonous task, the Bulldog leadership prevents any potential complacency by keeping the Soldiers well rested and well informed. “We’re the working horse of the battalion,” said Sgt. Mitchell Marks, of Tiffin, Ohio, a cannon crew member. “Our chain of command usually tries to schedule our missions so that we get maximum rest. They know how important that is.” During mission briefs, the Bulldog leadership gives their Soldiers up-to-date statistics,

charts, and graphs, so they can see first-hand the results of their hard work. Able to see the fruits of their labor, they continue to stay motivated during their day-today operations, said Spc. Joshua Peters, a cannon crew member from Lincoln, Neb. Since the Bulldogs spend so much time outside the wire, they have forged positive relationships with both the security forces and the people of Iraq. Such relationships are critical to the synchronization of the security effort. “Relationships are a pacing item,” said Brown, referring to the Army’s term for a mission-critical piece of equipment. “We cannot afford to lose a good relationship, not only with our ISF partners, but with the local populace as well. We always make sure to respect them and their culture in everything we do when we are in their area.” Recently, a citizen within the Bulldog’s area of responsibility witnessed insurgents emplacing an IED with the intent to harm U.S. forces. Due to the strong bond that the Bulldogs have with

the people in the area, the witness reported it to the Iraqi army, who was then able to catch the culprits and prevent anyone from being harmed. “That’s one point for the good guys,” said Collins. “Every one of our guys is an ambassador for the United States, and they act accordingly. We don’t do anything that would be disrespectful to the Iraqis, because it’s unprofessional and goes against the very grain of what we’re trying to accomplish in this country.” Be it dropping shells in OIF I or clearing the roadways in Operation New Dawn, the Bulldogs are invested in working toward a brighter future for Iraq’s next generation. “I hope that once we finally complete our mission here, we leave this country in a better condition than that of the Saddam era. And I think we’ve really planted the seeds for that,” said Collins. “Back in 2003, during the course of my patrols in Baghdad, I knew an elderly gentleman that had three or four small children. My goal is that I want those children to have a free society to grow up in.”
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Iraqi army unit conducts first solo rifle range
3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div., Public Affairs

Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

by Sgt. Christopher H. Jelle

The explosive bangs of firing rifles and the whiz of the bullets echo off the massive berm at the far end of the firing range. The unit’s second day of marksmanship training on the M-16 rifle is as typical as any basic training can be. Half-way through the day, the first U.S. Army Soldiers show up to pay a visit and see how their Iraqi counterparts are doing, now that they are training on their own. The company of Iraqi soldiers in the 38th Iraqi Army Brigade assigned to the 10th Iraqi Army Division, are learning to be proficient with the M-16 rifles provided by U.S. Forces after switching from the AK-47. Company D, 1st Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Advise and Assist Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, has helped the Iraqi army division in Maysan make the switch to the new weapons with training that began in July.

Company D trained the Iraqi leaders on everything from care and maintenance of the new weapons to basic rifle marksmanship. As the 3rd AAB prepares to redeploy back home to Fort Carson, Colo., in March, the visit to this range shows exactly what they came to southern Iraq to do. Sgt. 1st Class Ernest Ramirez, an armor crewmember in Company D, known as the “Dark Knights,” was one of the instructors for the Iraqi Army on the M-16 and was happy to see how the range was going during his visit. “I think it’s a great event, seeing the Iraqis train up their own soldiers,” said Ramirez, a native of San Antonio, Texas. “It’s a great feeling seeing the progress that we have made with these soldiers and see how far they’ve come since we first deployed out here to now, towards the end of our deployment here.” To celebrate their partnership, the U.S. and Iraqi forces arranged

a friendly shooting competition. After a quick practice round and a few small sight adjustments, one of the Iraqi soldiers and Spc. Joshua Felts, an infantryman from Hemphill, Texas, fired ten rounds at a target 200 meters down-range. The perfect 10 out of 10 from both competitors underscores the level of proficiency that these Soldiers adhere to. “This is the second time we shoot here,” said the Iraqi company commander who was enthusiastic about seeing better scores from his soldiers this time, compared to the last. “I’m sure the more experience they get with training, the higher marks they will attain.” One of the Iraqi soldiers expressed great appreciation for all the hard work and training from the American Soldiers who worked to ensure their training was done right and able to be passed on to the future Iraqi soldiers.

Left: Spc. Joshua Felts, an infantryman from Hemphill, Texas and assigned to Company D, 1st Bn., 8th Inf. Reg., 3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div., competes with an Iraqi soldier of the 38th IA Bde., 10th IA Div., during an M-16 range in Maysan, Iraq, Feb. 9. Right: Iraqi soldiers of the 38th IA Bde., 10th IA Div., score their target during an M-16 firing range in Maysan, Iraq, Feb. 9. Page 10

Photos by Sgt. Christopher H. Jelle

Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div., Public Affairs

by Pvt. Chastity R. Boykin

While there have been far fewer combat-related deaths than in previous years, motorcycle accidents have been on the rise. In fiscal year 2010, the Army reported 115 privately owned vehicle fatalities, 40 of which were on motorcycles. In fiscal year 2011, motorcycle crashes made up 50 percent of POV fatalities. Now is the time of a traditional “spring spike” or high risk period for Soldiers. The risk is even greater for Soldiers who are just returning home from deployment. For the 3rd Advise and Assist Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, the loss of a life for any reason is unacceptable, and leaders at all levels will emphasis motorcycle safety for all returning Soldiers. According to the 4th Infantry Division’s Command Motorcycle Safety Policy, preventative measures include mandatory training, leader mentorship, and the reinforcement of a Soldier’s personal responsibility to keep safe. Military leaders have extra leverage in changing behavior, and they are quickly adapting what they know about risk management and applying it to

motorcyclist training. Regulations mandate the use of helmets, safety gear, training, and other measures regardless of state law. Violators can be punished under the Uniform Code of Military Justice. Additionally, unit mentorship programs will go into effect at brigade, battalion, and company levels. Unit mentors must have five years of experience as a licensed motorcyclist and must have completed all required training. The unit mentor will be responsible for advising Soldiers on all safety requirements, purchasing and maintaining safe motorcycles and personal protective equipment, and promoting unit safety standards. Also, mentors are responsible for organizing unit riding events that promote safety. Soldiers must complete all required training before riding motorcycles or even being allowed to register their motorcycle on Fort Carson. The Basic Rider Course is the initial step for all new riders. In this course, Soldiers learn basic riding skills and steps for licensing. One year after completion of the basic course, Soldiers must take the Experienced Riders Course to learn new skills and

be evaluated on the skills they have developed the previous year. Soldiers who ride sport or touring bikes must complete the Military Sports Bike Riders Course in lieu of the Experienced Riders Course, in order to learn skills specific to the sports bikes. Soldiers who have completed all training, but have been deployed for more than six months, must complete the Motorcycle Refresher Course upon returning to Fort Carson before riding. Soldiers are also responsible for wearing and maintaining the proper personal protective equipment. Helmets must meet DOT standards and safety glasses or goggles must meet or exceed ANSI Safety Code Z87.1. PPE also includes long sleeved shirts or jacket, long pants and gloves. Additionally, motorcyclists must wear a highly visible jacket or vest in the daytime and reflective vest at night. For more information contact Carlos Ortiz, brigade tactical safety specialist at: carlos.a.ortizsierra@us.army.mil

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Volume I, Issue VII

Iron Soldiers find useful hobbies during their deployment
1st Bn., 68th Armor Reg., 3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div.

February 28, 2011

by Capt. Mark Nettles

Members of Company F, 1st Bn., 68th Armor Reg., 3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div., inspect sheet metal designs of the battalion crest. Sgt. Ricki French, a welder, from Louisville, Ill., made these plaques of the battalion’s crest.

Photo by Capt. Mark Nettles

While being deployed for the last 11 months, Soldiers of Company F, 1st Battalion, 68th Armor Regiment, 3rd Advise and Assist Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, have discovered hobbies and skills that have benefited the unit, fellow Soldiers and families back home. Many Soldiers spend their time off in the gym or in front of a game console, but the Soldiers of Company F have found some constructive ways to spend the deployment. After deploying last March, Pvt. Benjamin D. Corson, an armament repair specialist, was assigned as the repair and utilities specialist,

building, repairing and maintaining the battalion’s working and living areas. This position has allowed him to pass his first deployment very quickly. “I get in the zone and the hours quickly disappear,” said Corson about carpentry, his favorite hobby. The 25-year-old has built many things for the unit to include a morale, welfare and recreation theater that seats 45, a fullyfunctioning wood shop, wooden sniper shades for the company’s vehicles, display cases, covered walkways, and a podium. Corson is most proud of an Iraqi weapons
See “Hobbies” Page 13

Blackfoot Soldiers train Department Enforcement at JSS Minden
4th Sqdn., 10th Cavalry Reg., 3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div.

of

Border

by Spc. Joshua McBride

The Soldiers from Troop B, 4th Squadron, 10th Cavalry Regiment, recently hosted a training course at JSS Minden for the 9th Brigade, Department of Border Enforcement. Attached to the 1st Battalion, 68th Armor Regiment, 3rd Advise and Assist Brigade, 4th Infantry Division, the cavalry troopers invested a tremendous amount of time, hard work and dedication, which all came together during the first day of training at JSS Minden. The training was designed specifically to increase the

capabilities of the DBE in the eastern most point of the Basra Province. “Training the Iraqis in our own backyard allows us to go into detail and spend time on topics that would be difficult to teach [elsewhere],” said Spc. Eduardo Zamora from Denver, Colo. The instruction included first aid, map reading, patrolling, and vehicle and personnel searches. The “Blackfoot” troopers integrated real-life scenarios into training which allowed for a deeper understanding of the material. The cavalry troopers tested their DBE counterparts with practical exercises at the end of

each training day. “The Department of Border Enforcement handles personnel and vehicular traffic on a daily
See “Training” Page 14

Sgt. Carlos Murray teaches members of the 9th Bde, 4th DBE Region how to read a map. Murray is assigned to Troop B, 4th Sqdn., 10th Cav. Reg., which is currently attached to 1st Bn., 68th Armor Reg., 3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div. Page 12

Photo by Pfc. Jesse Vint

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Hobbies: Special skills being used for the Army and Family
Continued from Page 12

display case in the battalion headquarters. “I made something professional out of plywood and wood glue,” he said. “I was always taught quality first, even if it takes extra time.” The Land-O-Lakes, Fla., native loves carpentry and began his trade at age nine under the tutelage of his father. Even though his job as the battalion carpenter is ending soon, Corson looks forward to expanding his carpentry skills after returning to Fort Carson, Colo. “I’m working on getting a contractor license for Colorado and do construction business on the weekends,” said Corson. “My dream is to one day own a custom furniture business.” Corson isn’t the only Soldier who is using this deployment to fulfill a dream. Sgt. Ricki French, a Bradley Fighting Vehicle system maintainer, wants to change his military occupational specialty more to his liking. When the company’s MOStrained welder was transferred, French became the welder by default and has enjoyed the job. The native of Louisville, Ill., has been fixing equipment and welding since he was 14, working on his

neighbor’s corn and soybean farm. French finds value in being able to weld and create things with metal. “Stuff costs too much to let someone else fix it. I get to make something out of nothing,” he said with a grin. The 27-year-old is usually found in the battalion motor pool fabrication shop, a facility he helped build, bent over a piece of metal in a pair of soot-stained coveralls. His work for the battalion is needed most when the project is either too expensive or unique to buy. While in Iraq, French has built flagpoles, security doors, gates, equipment racks, fences, BBQ grills, and repaired dozens of damaged vehicles and containers. But French’s real skill as a welder really shines through in some of his more unusual projects. The welder made 12-inchhigh copies of the Silver Lion’s Battalion crest out of plate steel. The crests were used for a variety of purposes around the battalion’s area of operation. “I am most proud of the unit crests,” said French. “I want people to look at them and appreciate how difficult they were to build.“ While some Soldiers were honing

skills as a part of their deployed duties, others were spending their down time developing other unique hobbies. Spc. Adam Rivera, a petroleum specialist, did not mean to develop a new hobby when he was teleconferencing with his 3-yearold son A.J. a few months ago. “My son likes superheroes,” said the Union City, N.J. native, “Superman and Wolverine.” Rivera drew his son a picture of a superhero with an M4 rifle. His son promptly asked his father for that superhero for Christmas. The idea was planted and Rivera went to work transforming the drawing into workable blueprints. According the Rivera, it took many hours of his free time to design on his computer. Rivera sent the computer renderings to a company in New York City and had a six-inch plastic action figure with movable arms and legs built. The entire project cost $35 to mold, cast and paint the action figure. A.J. opened the present on Christmas Day and received “daddy’s toy.” “He forgot about the rest of his toys,” said Rivera. “My son has a toy nobody else has.”

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Iron Soldiers gain resilience through Training: Ensuring the help of Iron Strong Program a safer enviroment
3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div., Public Affairs

Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

by Spc. Khori D. Johnson

The 3rd Advise and Assist Brigade, 4th Infantry Division recently initiated the Iron Strong Program, a program operated out of the Iron Stronghold Resiliency Center on Camp Adder which demonstrates the brigade’s dedication to the Army-wide Comprehensive Soldier Fitness campaign. The Iron Strong Program is an initiative which brings Soldiers from every battalion to Camp Adder to have a break from their daily mission and participate in activities designed to enhance Soldiers’ resiliency. “The whole concept of the program is to have Soldiers come and take a knee,” said Staff Sgt. Sebastian Zarasua, the resiliency center noncommissioned officer in charge, from Crawford, Neb., assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Battery, 3rd Battalion, 29th Field Artillery Regiment. “We aim to give them some time off, create a very relaxed environment, and while they’re here away from their units, give them some good classes based on the five pillars of Comprehensive Soldier Fitness.” Throughout the program, Soldiers are exposed to the five pillars of Comprehensive Soldier Fitness: Physical, Emotional, Spiritual, Family, and Social. Each pillar is represented by resiliency center staff members, like the

brigade chaplain for the spiritual pillar and a nutritionist for the physical pillar. One of the benefits of assembling a mixture of Soldiers from all over the brigade lies in the fact that they get to meet and get to know a wide range of Soldiers and military

for all Iraqis

Continued from Page 12

basis. Instructing them on how to search for contraband in uncommon locations allows for a more secure border and ultimately a safer Iraq,” said Pfc. Sterling Murphy from Fredericksburg, Va. The training event concluded with the trainees planning and executing a dismounted patrol to establish an overnight observation post near the Shat al Arab Waterway. The trainees exercised troop leading procedures, map reading techniques, and the fundamentals of patrolling to complete their mission. Spc. Joshua Forbes, from Casey, Ill., said he was excited to see the DBE troops take such initiative and apply everything they learned during the final mission of the training course.

3rd AAB Soldiers listen intently during one of many class sessions during the Iron Strong Program, which is an initiative forged by the leadership of the 3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div..

Photo courtesy of 1st Bn., 8th Inf. Reg.

occupational specialties. Once they break the ice, the mixed group of Soldiers makes for a very positive and supportive environment, said Spc. Justin Howell, an infantryman from Fort Collins, Colo., assigned to Company A, 1st Battalion, 8th Infantry Regiment. While the Soldiers learn how to manage stress and become more
See “Training” Page 14

Spc. Jared Diaz, Spc. Eduardo Zamora, and Spc. Josh McBride instruct critical life saving skills during a first aid class for the 9th Bde, 4th DBE Region. All three Soldiers are assigned to Troop B, 4th Sqdn., 10th Cav. Reg., which is currently attached to 1st Bn., 68th Armor Reg., 3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div. Page 14

Photo by Pfc. Jesse Vint

Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

Break: Soldiers take a knee, recharge their batteries to accomplish the mission
resilient, they also get the chance to kick back and enjoy a little time off through barbecues, karaoke, and other fun activities. With the program recently finishing its second iteration, there has been a very positive response by participating Soldiers. “It was a really nice break. Also, seeing some new faces was really helpful,” said Spc. Shannon Nastold, an Arabic linguist from Cincinnati, Ohio, assigned to Company A, 3rd Special Troops Battalion.
Continued from Page 12

Staff members of the Iron Stronghold Resiliency Center and other 3rd AAB Soldiers, who are taking part in the Iron Strong Program, enjoy a good time with a little karaoke.

Photo courtesy of 1st Bn., 8th Inf. Reg.

Phoenix Battalion holds NCO Induction Ceremony
3rd AAB, 4th Inf. Div., Public Affairs

by Spc. Khori D. Johnson

The 3rd Special Troops Battalion recently welcomed 23 noncommissioned officers into the NCO Corps during an induction ceremony at Memorial Hall on Camp Adder Feb. 4. The inductees were Sgt. Clifford Arend, Sgt. Jared Boss, Sgt. Kevin Broderick, Sgt. Samuel Brown, Sgt. Matthew Murr, Sgt. Nicolai Rosario, and Sgt. Gilberto Salinas, all with Headquarters and Headquarters Troop; Sgt. Crystalynn Johnson, Sgt. Anthony Palumba, Sgt. Shaun Phillips, Sgt. Steven Thorsen, and Sgt. Denise Wilkie, all from Headquarters and Headquarters Company. Also inducted were Sgt. Jeffrey Collins, Sgt. Jeremy Klingler, Sgt. Amon Santiago, Sgt. Christopher Szuhay, and Sgt. Mark Wangerien,

all from Company A; Sgt. Aleksey Kolyushin, Sgt. Steve McGloin, Sgt. Robert McHugh, Sgt. Matthew Perry, Sgt. Corey Trammell, and Sgt. James Williams, all from Company B; and Sgt. Mackey Issac with the 422nd Military Police Company. The ceremony placed specific emphasis on what makes a good leader and several portions of the ceremony, such as the recitation of the NCO Creed, brought light to what is expected of the newlyinducted NCOs who are all assigned to 3rd STB, 3rd Advise and Assist Brigade, 4th Infantry Division. “I’ve been around a lot of great NCOs who I have learned from,” said Arend, a fire support specialist from San Diego, Calif. “I’ve learned to have loyalty to my Soldiers through them. Also,

I’ve learned that integrity is an important quality to have. You have to lead by example.”
See “Break” Page 16

Sgt. Clifford Arend, a fire support specialist from San Diego, Calif., takes his first steps as an accepted member of the NCO Corps during 3rd STB’s NCO Induction Ceremony at Memorial Hall at Camp Adder Feb. 4. Page 15

Photo by Spc. Khori D. Johnson

Volume I, Issue VII

February 28, 2011

Continued from Page 15

Leaders: Joining the NCO Corps
Command Sgt. Maj. Leida Anderson, the battalion sergeant major, hopes the ceremony instills a level of confidence and pride in the inductees that will drive them to do well in their careers as leaders. “This makes NCOs step up and fully understand their responsibility of when they accepted the rank of sergeant,” she said. “Every NCO has taken the necessary steps to make sure that they are successful in their jobs,” said Anderson. “I hope that when we transition back to garrison, we put forth that effort to ensure that we are as successful in garrison as we have been [in Iraq].”

1st Sgt. Shawn Carns, with HHT, leads a formation of 23 newly-inducted NCOs in the Charge of the Noncommissioned Officer during the 3rd STB’s NCO Induction Ceremony at Memorial Hall at Camp Adder Feb. 4.

Photo by Spc. Khori D. Johnson

Public Affairs Office
Col. James E. Rainey Commander Command Sgt. Maj. Miles S. Wilson Command Sergeant Major Maj. Alan S. Brown Public Affairs Officer Staff Sgt. Nathaniel G. Johnson Public Affairs Noncommissioned Officer Staff Writers
Sgt. Christopher H. Jelle Spc. Khori D. Johnson Pvt. Chastity R. Boykin

The Iron Advisor is produced in the interest of the Soldiers of the 3rd Advise and Assist Brigade, 4th Infantry Division. The Iron Advisor is an Army-funded newsletter authorized under provision of AR 360-1. Contents of the Iron Advisor are not necessarily the views of, nor endorsed by the U.S. Government, Department of Defense, Department of the Army or the 4th Infantry Division. All editorial content of the Iron Advisor is prepared, edited, provided and approved by

the 3rd AAB Public Affairs Office. The Iron Advisor welcomes articles, commentary, and photos from readers. The Iron Advisor reserves the right to edit submissions selected for the publication. All issues of the Iron Advisor can be viewed online from your home computer at: www.facebook.com/3bct4id Submissions should be emailed to Staff Sgt. Nathaniel G. Johnson at: nathaniel.g.johnson1@3bct4id.army.mil
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